Rebuilding Together volunteers make life more mobile for MLT residents

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Elna Morgan and granddaughter Sherri Lynd speak about the improvements that Rebuilding Together Seattle made to their Mountlake Terrace home Saturday.
Jeff McCoy, Wes Furste and Doug Gray survey the ramp being built outside Elna Young’s home.
A group photo of the volunteers, from left: Standing — Jeni Goeke and Gray. Kneeling — Furste, McCoy and Joshua Hayes.

A 92-year-old Mountlake Terrace woman and her disabled granddaughter now are better able to move around their home, thanks to a new ramp and other mobility aids installed Saturday by a Seattle-based organization that performs home repairs for those in need.

“It means a lot,” said a delighted Elna Morgan of the work by the Rebuilding Together Seattle’s Veterans Program.

According to Jeni Goeke, Rebuilding Together Seattle’s program and outreach coordinator, the volunteer-driven charity provides free home repairs to low-income homeowners, including those who are elderly, disabled, families with children, and veterans and their families.

Morgan, who uses a walker, had found it difficult to navigate the steps outside of her MLT mobile home. The widow of a World War II veteran, Morgan said the ramp will make it easier to get the mail and visit her sister, who lives a few doors away.

The home improvements will also benefit her granddaughter Sherri Lynd, who lives with Morgan and is recovering from a severe ankle injury that limits her mobility. “I am so grateful,” Lynd said.

On Saturday, Goeke and a small group of volunteers worked in the rain and wind to build the ramp, and also installed grab bars in the bathrooms and physical therapy bars for Lynd.

Founded in 1989, Rebuilding Together Seattle is part of the national Rebuilding Together organization, which has 200 affiliates nationwide. Projects are funded through donations and grants.

Three military veterans were among those working on Young’s home Saturday. Doug Gray, a former active duty Army paratrooper who retired in 2008 after serving as an Air Force reservist, said he specifically seeks out volunteer projects assisting veterans. Jeff McCoy, who retired after serving 22 years in the Air Force, added: “I always like to give back to communities. I enjoy helping out, especially people in need.”

Those interested in making a donation to the organization, volunteering or applying for assistance can learn more via the Rebuilding Together Seattle website.

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